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Omaha Magazine

Make Our Garden Grow: While Planning is Our Strong Suit, Patience is Not

Aug 27, 2021 04:01PM ● By Chris Stout-Hazard
overhead view of circular garden planters

Photo by Bill Sitzmann    

Some say to be a gardener, you must be patient. My husband, Roger—who studied landscape architecture at Texas A&M University, has cultivated gorgeous spaces for homes and businesses around the country, and has transformed our own yards into urban oases in a single season—might beg to differ.  

  It was the land, and its potential, that most caused us to fall in love with our little acreage at Double Heart Farm. It has huge fields in which our dogs, Howdy and Rooster, can roam and play; mature trees providing a refreshing sense of privacy right in the middle of the city; and so much raw space where Roger can work his magic.

Unlike our previous landscaping projects, the scale of the farm means the process of adding our multiple planned gardens will unfold over several years.

Photo by Bill Sitzmann    

 Our first project is an area of lawn lying between the house and the wooded lot to the east. After sketching a dozen possible designs for a garden maze, we settled on a series of beds laid out in concentric circles, with graceful curves and wide grass paths for walking. We determined the scale of the garden with a landscape tape measure and drone photos, and roughed out the perfect circles using rope tied to a center-mounted post and yard spray paint. After hauling and distributing about 15,000 pounds of soil and mulch, we planted the beds with hundreds—specifically, over 800—perennials, shrubs, and trees.

Roger understands how plants mature and has the patience and devotion to ensure they thrive, but he still wants a big impact fast. As a Texas native, accustomed to that harsher climate and terrain, he loves the richness of eastern Nebraska’s soil and the impressive range of plants that thrive in it. The gardens boast an endless array of colors and forms, with certain plants poised to spread and fill in the beds, and others set to tower over smaller varieties for drama.

Photo by Bill Sitzmann    

 Still, gardens take time to grow, and ours remains incomplete. As is so common with projects this year, our garden awaits the arrival of a key component—
a huge, round iron gazebo that will serve as a centerpiece and provide a focal point and seating area amidst the flowers. 

Whether waiting for blooms to open or the delivery of back-ordered iron work, 2021 is providing us with a few more lessons in patience.

Until next time, Roger and Chris, at Double Heart Farm.  

This article is part of a series chronicling the home renovation of Roger Hazard and Chris Stout-Hazard, furniture designers with Roger+Chris. Read more on or follow along on

This article originally appeared in the September 2021 issue of Omaha Home Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.  

Photo by Bill Sitzmann